PASTOR, YOU ARE THE KEY! The Path You Choose Will Determine Where the Congregation Goes. Will your people become “Great Commission Christians”? It all depends on you!
A MISSIONS TEAM WILL HELP YOU… lead your congregation into obedience to Christ’s command, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to all creation”. It has been said that “No stream rises higher than its source” and it is true that few congregations will exceed beyond their pastor in spiritual depth.
WHY CALL IT A TEAM?
- Because the word committee suggests people sitting at a table talking, talking, talking…
- The word TEAM suggests:
- Excitement and enthusiasm
- Cooperation and working together
- Winning and positive attitude
- That is what missions is all about!
WHY HAVE A MISSIONS TEAM?
- We accomplish more through delegation.
- More people get involved in God’s work.
- Criticism is minimized when people take ownership of the work.
- The church board cannot devote the necessary time to missions.
HOW LARGE SHOULD THE TEAM BE?
- It may be as small as three to five members.
- For many churches, this will be an ideal number.
- Quality is preferred over quantity.
- It will be easier to find a few qualified members even in the smaller church.
- The larger church will need more team members for the added responsibilities.
- It will, however, be more difficult for all its members to meet at the same time.
- In this case, a small executive team should conduct monthly business.
QUALIFICATIONS FOR TEAM MEMBERS SHOULD INCLUDE:
- Church member in good standing, faithful in attendance and tithing
- A willingness to devote 6-8 hours monthly
- Don’t overlook the youth – they will be leading tomorrow
- Include retirees – they have more free time
EACH MEMBER MUST HAVE A HEART THAT BEATS WITH A PASSION FOR THE
Do they love the lost?
- Do they love missions and missionaries?
- Are they consumed with missions?
A COOPERATIVE SPIRIT IS REQUIRED
- They must work as a team.
- There is no place for a person of uncooperative spirit.
- Unity in the team sets an example for the congregation.
THEY MUST BE GENEROUS IN THEIR MISSIONS GIVING
- They must be regular in their monthly faith promise giving.
- Generous in other missions appeals.
- No one should make decisions concerning missions’ funds if they are not generous givers to missions!
HOW SHOULD THE MEMBERS BE SELECTED?
- It may be by election
- But this becomes a popularity contest.
- This could result in electing members who care little for missions.
- It may be voluntary
- They may be enthusiastic at the moment but lack commitment.
- This could result in members who lack the necessary qualifications.
- It may be by appointment
- This is the best method and offers a number of advantages.
- It allows choosing people who are committed to missions.
DURING THE TEAMS FORMATION:
- The pastor may nominate the members.
- Those nominations may be approved by the church board.
- It may be advisable to keep the team small while in formation.
- Additional members can always be added later as needed.
ONCE THE TEAM HAS BEEN FORMED:
- The team may nominate future members.
- These nominations may be taken to the pastor and church board for final approval.
HOW LONG SHOULD EACH MEMBER SERVE?
- 1 year is too short.
- 2 to 3 years is more adequate with the possibility of serving successive terms
- No member should be appointed indefinitely. If a member does not work well with the team and there is not term limit, there is no option other than asking that person to step down.
- Terms should be staggered to insure that experienced members will always have a voice in decisions.
AS A TEAM THEY SHALL ADMINISTER ALL MISSIONS FUNDS
- In a local bank account or if in the church’s general bank account, a separate accounting of missions’ funds must always be maintained and these funds should never be borrowed or co-mingled with other funds.
- Make decisions concerning monthly commitments for missionary support.
- And respond to urgent financial appeals for one-time assistance following floods, earthquakes, etc.
- They will responses to cash appeals for projects for buildings, land, etc.
- They will remember birthday and Christmas gifts to the missionaries being supported.
- Including offerings at missions’ activities for missionaries and other speakers and the allocation of funds for an annual mission’s convention and related activities.
- They will appointment of a missions’ treasurer within their team to make all monthly disbursements of missions’ funds.
THE TEAM SERVES AS A LINK BETWEEN THE MISSIONARIES AND THE CONGREGATION
- They will communicate with the missionaries by e-mail, especially concerning prayer needs.
- They will create a file of each of the missionary’s letters and information received.
- They will share the prayer needs with the congregation.
THE TEAM WILL MAINTAIN AN ATTRACTIVE MISSIONS DISPLAY
- It should be located in a well-lighted, well trafficked area.
- Assign one or two people, with artistic ability, to keep the display updated.
- Display curios collected from missionaries and overseas trips.
- Include a missions’ bulletin board.
- Display certificates with photographs of the missionaries the church supports.
THE TEAM WILL ASSIST THE PASTOR IN PLANNING THE CONVENTION
- Establish the dates.
- Plan the activities.
- Secure the speaker.
- Name the committees and sub-committees.
- Plan the promotions
- Provide the finances to cover the cost of the convention.
- Remember – Always in cooperation with the pastor!
THE TEAM WILL PLAN A MONTHLY MISSIONS SUNDAY
- They will present a well-planned missions’ “Window on the World” each month.
- The success of the Faith Promise giving depends on the work and prayer invested in this monthly presentation.
- This “Window on the World” will continue to educate, motivate and inspire the congregation for missions throughout the year.
WHAT ARE THE TEAM’S PRIMARY GOALS?
- Create world vision.
- Promote intercessory prayer for world needs.
- Organize missions’ conventions.
- Participate in monthly Missions’ Sundays.
- Plan short missions’ trips.
- Help select candidates for short-term service.
THE TEAM’S PURPOSE IS…
- To be an extension of the pastor in promoting missions throughout the congregation.
- To make themselves (the team) available to every department in the church, providing resources and encouragement for promoting missions to every age group.
BUT THE TEAM’S PRIMARY PURPOSE IS TO PROVIDE ADEQUATE OPPORTUNITY FOR EVERY MEMBER TO OBEY THE GREAT COMMISSION.
The above article, “Building Missions Leadership In The Local Church” was written by Paul Brannan. The article was excerpted from Checklist for Brannan Missions in the Local Church.
The material is copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.
This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”